Bacha Khan’s philosophy of non-violence and Benazir Bhutto’s charisma inspires Malala

Published: January 16, 2012

Malala Yousafzai.

PESHAWAR: The positive global and local response has invigorated Malala Yousafzai with additional courage and she will continue her efforts for education, especially among girls, by setting up the Malala Education Foundation.

“Over 400 schools in Swat have been fully destroyed by militants and I would like to work for the rehabilitation of damaged schools,” said the 14-year-old, who has earned international fame and recognition for raising her voice against the Taliban.

Malala also plans to play active role in politics after completing her education.

“I want to become an honest and hard-working politician as our country badly needs committed political leaders.”

Responding to a question, Malala said she is impressed from the charismatic personality of Benazir Bhutto and politics of Bacha Khan.

“Even though I was a student of class five in 2009, I decided to convey the concerns of female students to the outer world. For this purpose, my father guided me to contribute diaries to BBC under the pen name of `Gul Makai’,” she said.

“I made contributions to BBC regularly and reflected the sentiments of my terrorised classmates and neighbours.”

She also expressed the suffering of displaced people after migrating to Shangla when the government launched a military operation for purging the plagued Swat from militants.

“I was scared enough to see pictures of bodies hanging in Swat. But the decision to ban girls from going to school was shocking for me and I decided to stand against the forces of backwardness,” she remarked.

“It very painful for me and my classmates to hear that our school may be closed and we would not be allowed to get education,” she added.

Her courage and bravery to risk her life to highlight the real face of militants ultimately paid off when she was nominated for an international peace prize. She beat 93 contestants from 42 countries to be nominated for the International Children’s Peace Prize 2011.

“The news about nomination for an international peace award was very exciting for me and my family because I earned a good name for my country,” she said.

Though the prize was won by a 17-year-old South African girl, the Government of Pakistan decided to encourage the girl and awarded her with a National Peace Prize, making her the first child to be honoured with the prestigious award.

In addition to that, Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani also announced a cash prize of Rs1 million for her bravery, while the governments of Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa, Punjab and Sindh also honoured her with cash prizes of Rs500,000 each.  When asked about security concern, as she is now a public figure and role model for youth, Malala said she does not want security.

“I feel secure in my city and don’t want to be pointed out due to deployment of security officials around me.”

Ziauddin Yusafzai, her proud father, said, “I never imagined my little daughter would make us so proud and bring laurels to the country.”

Ziauddin, who runs a private school, said he fully supported Malala and never prohibited her to write against the Taliban for security purposes.

“I named her Malala after being inspired from Malala of Maiwand (Afghanistan), a brave lady who urged her countrymen to fight against intruders through her poetry,” he said

“She has fulfilled my dream and played the role of Malala in the true sense,” he remarked.

Published in The Express Tribune, January 16th, 2012.

Reader Comments (16)

  • adeel759
    Jan 16, 2012 - 8:15AM

    Masha Allah, Malala Yousufzai and Arfa Karim Randhawa, so long we have such daughters we can think of standing tall and growing strong, as a nation.

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  • Jan 16, 2012 - 8:56AM

    Great to hear, we need all the courage we can get against the barbarians.

    I remember those diary entries still. Did not know about her name’s origin and glad I learned something new.

    Wonder if the same regressive cable operators which shut BBC over the ‘Secret Pakistan’ documentary believe her diaries which brought much needed attention were ‘lies against the country’ too or simply proof of their ignorance and cowardice from the truth.

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  • Ch Allah Daad
    Jan 16, 2012 - 9:16AM

    Imran Khan should learn bravery from this young girl. Taliban destroyed 400 schools in Swat only and never heard Imran condemning them.

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  • Aakasa
    Jan 16, 2012 - 11:07AM

    At times, things are exaggerated and exacerbated unnecessarily.
    There are even more inspiring girls than Malala who outstrip her in valor and courage.
    No doubt her bravery should be acknowledged and acclaimed but not over spoken in lime light.Recommend

  • Maqbool laghari
    Jan 16, 2012 - 11:07AM

    Imran khan still favors to talk with the intruders, terrorist and to have coalition with culprits and dictators. It shows that he is trying to bring such black color people once again in the rings of governance.

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  • Sid
    Jan 16, 2012 - 11:26AM

    Power of 1.

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  • ali baba
    Jan 16, 2012 - 11:32AM

    O girl you are the shining star on the horizon of pakistan. brave and intelligent girl education is the only answer for the problems of pakistan,i support you

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  • Ali Wazir
    Jan 16, 2012 - 12:18PM

    Media Creation…

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  • sam
    Jan 16, 2012 - 12:30PM

    Malala needs to learn from Arfa Karim. She gave Pakistan honour.Arfa Karim should be role model for Malala

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  • Mudassir
    Jan 16, 2012 - 1:03PM

    @adeel759:
    You forgot Sitara Burooj Akbar.

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  • relevant
    Jan 16, 2012 - 1:19PM

    hail to the glory.

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  • rohool
    Jan 16, 2012 - 1:53PM

    but try to understand the saint in politics.

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  • Acorn Guts
    Jan 16, 2012 - 2:21PM

    These handful of media glorified hope idols might be bright and brave, I do appreciate them for that, but they’ll do good only if the rest of 187million strong Pakistani population would get up and fix the system to let these saplings with uncertain future actually grow up to be what they promise.

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  • G. Din
    Jan 16, 2012 - 5:24PM

    See what miracles they are capable of when you let them breathe free!

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  • antanu g
    Jan 16, 2012 - 8:16PM

    @Ch Allah Daad:
    article is about something very positive and you should appreciate it instead of bringing irrelevant issues.i doubt you are a well wisher of your country.learn from we indians and you would be ashamed of your attitude.

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  • antanu g
    Jan 16, 2012 - 8:17PM

    @Aakasa:
    instead of giving spaces to talebans…mala and her types deserve accolades. why denounce it?or you want only bad news to be posted about pakistan?

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